Cornish MPs Kick-Start Apprenticeships

Cornwall’s MPs today launched a campaign to create at least 100 new apprenticeships in 100 days.

The six Conservative MPs are all working together to secure pledges from local businesses, charities or schools to take on apprentices for the first time, or to grow their existing apprenticeship programme.

St Ives MP Derek Thomas said: “Apprenticeships offer a brilliant opportunity for local businesses to help develop the careers of talented young people here in Cornwall and ensure the workforce of the future has the skills it needs.”

Steve Double, MP for St Austell and Newquay, added: “People like Jamie Oliver, Stella McCartney and even Alex Ferguson all started their careers as apprentices – not to mention many of today’s business leaders.”

Scott Mann, MP for North Cornwall, said: “I want local young people to be the rising stars of the future and local employers to help grow that talent.”

They will be writing to local businesses setting out the benefits and how to get involved, urging anyone interested to contact their local MP.

The 100 in 100 campaign is led by MP Nadhim Zahawi, the Prime Minister’s Adviser on Apprentices, as part of the Government’s goal of three million apprenticeship starts by 2020.

In the South West there has been 280,450 apprenticeship starts since May 2010 (see editors notes for constituency breakdown), and 2,615,600 in England.

Sarah Newton, MP for Truro and Falmouth, added: “For every single one of those apprenticeship starts, there was a person gaining new skills and hands on experience giving them a brighter future.”

MP for South East Cornwall Sheryll Murray said: “Its important Cornwall is a key part of the apprenticeship drive ensuring more opportunities for our young people to get on in life and do well.”

George Eustice, MP for Camborne and Redruth, added: “Businesses who have hired apprentices say it improves productivity, future skills levels, staff retention and recruitment as well as boosting staff morale.”

The formal launch of the Campaign will be held in the House of Commons in February 2016.